April 7, 2017 - Biennale of Sydney - The 21st Biennale of Sydney
April 7, 2017

Biennale of Sydney

Mit Jai Inn, Junta Monochrome #1, 2016. Oil on canvas, 800 x 800 x 50 cm. Courtesy the artist; Gallery Ver, Bangkok; and Cartel Artspace, Bangkok. Photo: Jirat Ratthawongjirakul.

The 21st Biennale of Sydney
March 16–June 11, 2018

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Mami Kataoka, Artistic Director of the 21st Biennale of Sydney, has revealed the first group of 21 artists selected for the 21st edition of the Asia Pacific’s leading contemporary art event. With around 70 artists expected to be included in the 21st Biennale, this initial selection provides insight into the themes of the 2018 edition.

Celebrating its 45th anniversary next year, the Biennale of Sydney will be presented over 12 weeks from Friday, March 16 until Monday, June 11, 2018 (Preview: March 13–15) at multiple locations throughout Sydney. It will feature major new commissions and recent work by contemporary artists from Australia and around the world.

The 21 artists announced today as part of the first reveal include one artist duo, 10 artists from throughout Asia, five European artists, four Australian artists and one artist from North America. The initial list of artists is as follows:

Eija-Liisa Ahtila (Born 1959 in Finland, lives and works in Helsinki) / Ai Weiwei (Born 1957 in China, lives and works in Beijing) / Brook Andrew (Born 1970 in Australia, lives and works in Melbourne) / Oliver Beer (Born 1985 in England, lives and works in Paris and London) / Anya Gallaccio (Born 1963 in Scotland, lives and works in San Diego and London) / Laurent Grasso (Born 1972 in France, lives and works in Paris and New York) / N.S. Harsha (Born 1969 in India, lives and works in Mysore) / Mit Jai Inn (Born 1960 in Thailand, lives and works in Chiang Mai) / Kate Newby (Born 1979 in New Zealand, lives and works in Auckland and New York) / Noguchi Rika (Born 1971 in Japan, lives and works in Okinawa) / Nguyen Trinh Thi (Born 1973 in Vietnam, lives and works in Hanoi) / Ciara Phillips (Born 1976 in Canada, lives and works in Glasgow) / Koji Ryui (Born 1976 in Japan, lives and works in Sydney) / Semiconductor (Ruth Jarman, born 1973 in England, and Joe Gerhardt, born 1972 in England, live and work in Brighton) / Yasmin Smith (Born 1984 in Australia, lives and works in Sydney) / George Tjungurrayi (Born c. 1943 in Australia, lives and works in Kintore) / Nicole Wong (Born 1990 in Hong Kong, lives and works in Hong Kong) / Wong Hoy Cheong (Born 1960 in Malaysia, lives and works in Kuala Lumpur) / Yukinori Yanagi (Born 1959 in Japan, lives and works in Hiroshima) / Haegue Yang (Born 1971 in South Korea, lives and works in Berlin and Seoul) / Jun Yang (Born 1975 in China, lives and works in Vienna, Taipei and Yokohama) 

Commenting on the curatorial premise for the 21st Biennale of Sydney, Kataoka said: "Next year's Biennale will explore multiple viewpoints in search of a state of equilibrium."

"With a holistic view, the 21st Biennale of Sydney will also seek in-depth engagement with individuals and communities while exploring a range of perspectives and meanings of abstractions. Rather than focusing on a specific concept or theme, the exhibition will suggest multi-layered perspectives of the world and its histories simultaneously. In July this year, the exhibition title will be announced along with details of the themes and concerns informing this edition.”

Kataoka described the Biennale experience as: "a journey; a walk through microcosms of the world today based on the stratum of history, human knowledge, emotions, desires and beliefs, as well as the mysteries of natural phenomena and the whole of the universe."

To commemorate the organisation's 45th anniversary, the exhibition will revisit the Biennale’s rich history through a close examination of its Archive, drawing on 45 years of art and encounters.  Since its inception in 1973, the Biennale of Sydney has showcased the work of nearly 1,800 artists from more than 100 countries, building a reputation as one of the leading international art events.

To view more detailed information on this initial list of artists participating in the 21st Biennale of Sydney, please visit biennaleofsydney.com.au.

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